People can truly use EtherDrop for anything, from VRMMOs to computer-aided design work, teleconferences to NASCAR training. There are programs that only the military uses, and programs for reporters and historians. And of course there are social networking platforms.
The most common programs are what people call “dress-up” packages. These are collections of avatar-customization options. They include cosmetic adjustments and fashions for avatars. Avatar fashion has become an industry of sorts in the last couple years. Someone who is more interested in that stuff than I am would know all of the latest developments, but even I am a little curious to see how that industry evolves.
Then there are all of the so called “professional” packages. Let’s say you are a structural engineer. If you have a computer that can process the math, you can run a software suite that lets you build a bridge in total virtual reality. You can drive across it, walk through it, touch every weld and rivet. Shrink it down so it fits in your palm, place it on a topo map of the area you want to build it. Or suppose you are the executive of a worldwide electronics company. You have meetings to attend all over the world. Why not have those meetings in a tea house being served by geisha? Or maybe you design and sell mountaineering equipment: you could get together with your friends and test out your gear designs on a virtual K2.
And of course, the games. If it seems like I’m beating a dead horse, think again, because VR games are noble, flaming steeds that charge bravely across the bridge of Kazad-Dum into the unlimited worlds of the human imagination! The virtual tea house is enticing, the virtual K2 is certainly exhilarating, but games give you experiences that you couldn’t have anywhere on Earth. If you want to be a cat-person you can play Legends of Ki’vun, or if you feel like being a noble elf you can play Mesiterra 2. There are also space adventures with interplanetary empires and city-sized warships, and supernatural horror games. Racing games have never been so thrilling! And VR gives you a chance to step into the shoes of the greatest athletes of all time—your physical body does not limit the things your avatar can be. When Hiroki Sato spoke of the technical capabilities of EtherDrop, he certainly had games in mind, and I get the feeling that developers haven’t even begun to unlock the platform’s true potential.